Seventy-Seven Notebooks

These notebooks have lived in four towns, two states, and three houses — for Each successive move, I have packed them up and carried them along with Me — often they were among the first possessions I unpacked — as my

Collection has expanded, day by day, and year by year, I have hidden them Away in drawers, bureaus, and closets. I’ve never bothered to order them in Any way — I have simply put them away — rarely have I reread them, only

Long enough to find the ones I wanted to revise — in some haphazard way, They have been good to me, they have showed me the way back — on one of My first hot afternoons alone in Boston, I unloaded the boxes and boxes of

Notebooks only to discover that they fit exactly in my linen cupboard — with Some room to grow — so instead of sheets and towels, I have rows and rows Of poems — this past Sunday morning I was looking for one year in

Particular, out of the thirteen years I have been keeping them, and it was Tucked away at the back — I’ve been practicing you see, learning how to see.

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